June 2010

Paedophile jailed for 18 years after victim sees child abuse storyline on EastEnders

A paedophile rapist who was finally trapped after one his victims watched an Eastenders storyline on child abuse has been jailed for 18 years.

Raymond Sharratt, 37, had abused young girls at a string of addresses but terrified them into silence and he got away with his crimes for almost 15 years.

He was brought to justice after one of the girls – now in her 20s – tuned into the BBC soap to see Bianca Jackson’s boyfriend sexually abuse her stepdaughter.

The grim plot, which sparked 200 complaints from viewers, was so realistic the woman finally decided to report Sharratt to police.

Sharratt, of Chorley, Lancashire, yesterday pleaded guilty to two counts of rape and two counts of indecent assault on three young girls.

Police said the former telecoms engineer began abusing one of his victims, now in her 20s, in 1995 when she was just seven.

Two of the girls, also both now in their 20s, reported the abuse to their family but the allegations were not believed.

In 2006, while in Barnsley, Sharratt was sent to prison for 16 weeks for indecently assaulting a minor and forcing her to watch pornography.

Police investigated allegations Sharratt was abusing the other girls but the terrified victims would not talk to police.